Editors Blog


A Global Warming Tax on Your Business?

December 11, 2009
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If forced to take a side, I would join the ranks of global warming skeptics.  

I’d argue that historical temperature measurements don’t go back far enough and that we might be in the midst of a natural warmer cycle. I’d contend that man-made carbon dioxide is just a tiny fraction of what our planet produces naturally with volcanoes, cows, etc. I’d say global warming proponents sometimes use misleading statistics to make their case and ignore contradictory data.

But there’s a gaping hole in my position, and it’s not in the ozone layer. My conflict is that I love glaciers, and they are disappearing.

Three years ago I spent two days hiking in Glacier National Park and was awed by its beauty. I enjoyed it so much I’m returning next summer for a weeklong visit. According to some experts, my timing is good because all of the park’s glaciers could be gone in 10 years. 

I've viewed decades-apart photos of the park’s retreating glaciers. The vast shrinkage is disturbing, and it’s happening worldwide. To view “climate change” images from around the globe, click here

I was all set to slam the global “climate change” meetings in Copenhagen as over-the-top and filled with political and personal agendas. And what about the folly of the Environmental Protection Agency declaring that carbon dioxide is a public danger?

But now I am torn. There’s no doubt we need to be better caretakers of the earth’s resources, to work and live “green” and leave the planet in good condition for our kids and grandkids.

But at what cost? How do we pay for better environmental practices without succumbing to the doomsday hype of zealots? I sure don’t want businesses to absorb indiscriminate “climate change” taxes.

Rather than tax businesses, which would trigger higher costs for goods and services, let’s reward those who help the planet. Simultaneously, let’s do a better job of holding accountable (i.e., big fines) those companies that violate current EPA guidelines for clean air, water and emissions.

One way to reward businesses is with better tax credits for provable environmental and energy-saving accomplishments. Let’s provide deeper breaks for those companies that design, build and rent environmentally efficient buildings.

This week I received an email from reader Chris Thorman. Chris shared a blog that highlights the use of green and red glowing eggs to demonstrate a building’s operating efficiency. Click Here to learn how sustainability consultant Global Knowledge is connecting human behavior with efficient building management. 

Chris’ blog demonstrates one of thousands of initiatives worldwide that help everyone make the transition to a more sustainable future.

I think we can build, live, work and play in a more environmentally friendly manner without resorting to drastic legislation, political death matches and more taxes.

Based on free market principles, I believe architects, contractors, engineers, building owners and a wide range of other pros will provide innovative solutions to our environmental challenges--without the need for massive government intervention. Just give these pros a little support and recognition, and they’ll do the rest.

Am I wrong?
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Healing

Clyde Fleming
December 14, 2009
The earth is like a persons body.Cut yourself,washin and clean the cut.Leave it alon it will heal itself.Science as early as 2006,have discovered that even the north pole was once a tropical paradise,no ice.(of course they have a diffrent take on it,other than the Bible)According to the Bible,thousands of years ago the earth had a water cannopy incircling it.The whole earth was a tropical paradise.Genesis 1:7,7:1.Man can have his 55 million years ago,I cant count that far.Revelation 11:18 ............... It is time to destroy all who have caused destruction on the earth." Thats my take Tim,remove all who dont want a nice clean earth to live on.(<:.

Proof a-plenty

Clyde Fleming
December 14, 2009
"After 45 years, life returns to Armageddon atoll 16 April 2008 " http://news.scotsman.com/scitech/After-45-years-life-returns.3984855.jp

Roofing/Waterproofing

Tommy Sullivan
December 15, 2009
I use a roofing coating for industry that is 100% safe . We use it all over 5 states. it number one on helping the environment

Technology, not taxes

Jim Olsztynski
December 17, 2009
Global warming may or may not be a catastrophic phenomenon, but even if it is the solution will not come from the bureaucrats devising Rube Goldberg treaties in Copenhagen. Technological solutions may play a part, or maybe even simpler solutions such as incentives to plant trees and green roofing everywhere. The concluding chapter of "Superfreakonomics" discusses some intriguing ideas along these lines by some of the planet's most brilliant thinkers.

global warming

Mark F
December 28, 2009
i have been on the fence about this for years. Yes, no, yes, no. Who do we beleive? The only proof seems to be that glaciers are shrinking, at an alarming rate. While i have no desire to hike the glaciers, i am concerned what is this going to mean to all of us in the long run? We need to take care of our home. Just like a house. you party, get fat and dumb, you die early in a huble. It just cant be wrong to want to make improvements, calm calculated improvements. Mark

Global Warming

Glenn Bradley
December 30, 2009
To say one is a global warming skeptic today is to show one's political party affiliation. It took me about thirty minutes one day to search the web for any article skeptical of global warming that was not written by a political activist. There are none. It also takes only a minute to search Wikipedia for ‘scientific opinion on climate change'. It lists the academies of science, research councils, universities, geological societies, etc and their opinions on climate change. It's simple. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas. Levels have been increasing at a high rate since the industrial revolution. Mostly through burning fossil fuels. Again to say that you are a global warming skeptic is to only show your political tendencies. It would take one hour to read up on the issues from a non-partisan viewpoint. But I know you're not going to do that.

Global Warming

Tim Fausch
January 6, 2010
Glenn: Thanks for the feedback. I realize this topic can be polarizing. When I watched An Inconvenient Truth, I was alarmed by some of the information. It provided some facts that are non-debateable. And the photos of the receding glaciers at Glacier National Park are very convincing as well. My question is how much of these changes are cyclical, taking into account thousands of years, not just the last 150 years? And how much of what is taking place is caused naturally, not by man-made products? And what about recent trends that show some decrease in temperatures (i.e. the worst cold snap in England since the 1980s - http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34706351/ns/world_news-europe)? I remain open to learning from a variety of sources.

Global Warming

Forrest
January 23, 2010
Glenn: it is a polarizing subject, but please look at the sources for your information too. The academies, universities, research councils etc. get their funding from somewhere as well. Almost all of them are federally funded and almost all federally funded money is to find support for Man-made global warming. 1994-04, Fed spent ~10 Billion to find evidence of MMGW, same period only 19 million on other alternatives, thats .19%. Tim: I live in northern Montana near Glacier Park. I have seen and read about the shrinking glaciers countless times. The misleading part of the pictures and articles that you saw in the park are that the earliest pictures taken were just after the end of the "little ice age" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Ice_Age . Since then the glaciers have been retreating as per natural cycle, starting well before 1940 and the onset of modern fossil fuel usage. One thing that you do not read is that the snowpack of the last 3 years has negated about 50 years of glacial shrinking. I can go on and on, but I will save you all from a boring lecture such as Al Gore's. I just wish it would quit snowing so I could quarry some fieldstone!

GLOBAL WARMING

UNHAPPYIN BOSTON
January 28, 2010
Why do so many people believe that global warming is a bad thing? Archeologists find remains of warm climate creatures in Siberia and other really cold places- the planet has already survived ice ages, great weather changes from warm to cold to warm again. So we have a few less polar bears, fewer glaciers, and this is such a bad thing? I don't get it.

awareness & clarity

Neeraj
January 31, 2010
almost all of us a little bit confused that what should we do and how can we put our best foot forward to cope up with the crises. Ie somebody knows the ans of it then please make me too familiar of it.

Glacier

Tim Fausch
June 14, 2010
Forest: Don't know if you hike in Glacier. I am returning to there in July for a week of hiking. We have a rough schedule, but any day hikes you would particularly recommend?

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